In Malawi, Limbe Leaf Tobacco Company (LLTC) has undertaken a water storage dam project to provide water access to growers at seedling production time to help improve the yield, quality and survival of their seedlings. The dams also encourage increased dry planting, which results in higher volumes and better quality crops.
Dams are being built in strategic locations in order to provide the farming communities with a source of water throughout the year for both tobacco and food crops, as well as water for domestic and livestock purposes. We evaluate the farmer density in an area, study the water availability and earmark sites for geographical surveys and suitability. The growers are located within a 5 km radius of the project.
Benefits of the project include a permanent water supply; the guarantee of an earlier seedbed production; early water planting; increased hectares of production due to ease of nursery husbandry; higher yields; higher returns; and reduction in time of travel to available sources of water for tobacco nurseries during the dry season.
Permanent water at these sites opens up many different avenues for increased grower profits and sustainable income, ultimately improving the living standards.